The Long Search

Film Info: “The Long Search” – BBC/Time/Life (1977) – a series of 13 programs, 52 minutes each

Distributor:  Ambrose Video – $99 for the entire set on DVD

Summary:  A documentary on world religions and new religions, narrated by Ronald Eyre (who is irritatingly obtrusive in several instances).  Especially useful are Orthodox Christianity – the Rumanian Solution, which is helpful for illustrating religious symbolism and ritual, the pervasiveness of religion in people’s lives, and the place of religion in one then-Communist country; and African Religion – Zulu Zion, which focuses on new religions in South Africa, emphasizing the importance of dreams, ancestors, and place.  Other useful films in the series include Protestant Spirit: USA; Catholicism; and Judaism.  The film on Alternate Lifestyles in California is disappointingly shallow.

Film notice taken (with permission) from the “Teaching Resources” list in Meredith McGuire’s Religion: The Social Context, third edition. Her 5th edition (available from Waveland Press: see does not contain the resource list. I have only traced some of these films to current distributors. Please post updated information about them, if you have it. – JS

Orthodox Christianity: The Rumanian Solution

Film Info: Part of “The Long Search”, a 1977 BBC series hosted by Ronald Eyre – 52 minutes

Distributor: Ambrose Videos has the entire series on DVD for $99

Summary: The Orthodox churches in Eastern Europe seem to be bound to the Communist states in essentially loveless marriages, except in Rumania. The Rumanian Orthodox Church is still seen as an important aspect of Rumania’s cultural heritage and ethnic identity. The Orthodox liturgy is one of the oldest and longest in Christendom, and the spirituality of the services intensified by the Byzantine splendor of the setting and the beauty of some of the most inspiring choral music to be heard in any church in the world.